| 31 March 2023, Friday |

Saudis kept U.S. informed on talks with Iran, White House reports

According to White House spokesperson John Kirby, Saudi Arabia kept Washington aware of its negotiations with Iran to reestablish diplomatic ties, but Washington was not personally involved.

According to Kirby, the road map unveiled on Friday appeared to be the outcome of multiple rounds of negotiations, some of which took place in Baghdad and Oman, and that the US had backed as it sought to put an end to the Yemeni conflict and what he called Iranian aggression:

“The Saudis did keep us informed about these talks that they were having, just as we keep them informed on our engagements, but we weren’t directly involved.”

The White House believes that internal and external pressure, including effective Saudi deterrence against attacks from Iran or its proxies, ultimately brought Iran to the table, Kirby said.

“We support any efforts to de-escalate tensions there and in the region. We think it’s in our interests, and it’s something that we worked on through our own effective combination of deterrence and diplomacy.”

As for normalization of Saudi ties with Israel, he said, “it’s not clear that this arrangement affects that or is designed to deal with that, but we obviously continue to support normalization.”

  • Reuters